Despite being new to the posing, Victoria Espaldon dominated.
Some of Asia’s top talent was on display at the 2017 Michelob Ultra Guam National Bodybuilding and Body Fitness Championships and International Invitational, hosted by the Guam National Physique Federation at the Sheraton Laguna Guam Resort.
When the dust settled, Guam and Japan led with overall wins in bodybuilding and body fitness.
In the Bikini Division, short class, rookie competitor Victoria Espaldon upset beauty queen Camerin Mendiola and Keisha Raras. She told Pacific Daily News:
“I only started training in August and I know a lot of these girls prepared way in advance. My cousin Des, who is actually a trainer at Paradise Fitness, actually got me into the mindset of eating healthier with the help of her foundation’s program with IFBB Pro Gregory Monk called Core-6,” Espaldon said. “So this is something I’ve never really thought about doing but I did it for the fun of it. They got me comfortable with stepping into the gym and helped build that foundation for me and Des pushed me to work hard until comp day.”
Espaldon also won the Bikini Overall, beating out Keiko Kojima, who was first in the Bikini Division, tall class.
“It’s been such an experience because the hardest part for me has been eating. I had no idea what I was getting myself into but I’m so stoked that I got first place,” added Espaldon. “My coach and I have already started planning for next year, so I’m excited.”
Her, Desiree Eay, desrcribed the training that led up to the competition.
“I really had to teach her from the starting point. It was like starting from a baby’s crawling stage, but I was grateful because she was my first competitive athlete in the sport and it really tested me and challenged me and forced me to pick my own brain,” said Eay. “So the process was really tedious for both of us. We learned a lot.”
“Today was a but nostalgic for me,” she said. “And even though I guided Victoria through the whole process, she really put forth a 100-percent effort, good showmanship and her work ethic was just unbelievable. She did the hard part.”
In the Men’s Bodybuilding categories, Kikuo Asano of Japan took first place in the lightweight class, which catapulted him to an overall win.
In the Men’s Physique Division, short class, Jun Deatley took first place and the Men’s Physique Overall. Joshua Cantara took first in the middle class category and Troy Hall took the win in the tall class.
“I didn’t expect to win tonight, I just came out here to have fun and my message to everyone is to come out here even is people say not to,” Cantara said. “Hard work speaks for itself so no one out here can tell you what you can and can’t do. So that’s why I stepped on stage tonight — not to beat anybody, not to take the competition but to motivate people to come out themselves.”